Bookkeepers are employees who are in charge of the company's general ledger. They are well-versed in basic accounting principles, and they apply these in their work. Bookkeepers manage the entry of items in the general ledger, assign items into their proper categories, and ensure that the entries are balanced. They also act as auditors by checking the accuracy and veracity of the receipts or vouchers in their possession before entering them into the system. Bookkeepers ensure that their files are up to date and free of errors.

Bookkeeper Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real bookkeeper resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Manage AR, prepare deposits and perform basic receptionist/customer service tasks in office.
  • Perform journal entries, balance ledger, perform bank reconciliations, control inventory, coordinate proper guest accommodation.
  • Post and update of daily sales and purchases into QuickBooks system.
  • Execute monthly collection of Medicaid surplus funds from clients on a monthly basis.
  • Post resident receipts, Medicaid remittance, and process adjusting entries to the A/R detail.
  • Work closely with QC personnel for the planning of tooling and the flow process of PWB's.
  • Download shipping invoice and record bill and invoice on QuickBooks, then ACH shipping fee for shipping fee bill to merchant.
  • Handle all accounts payable, general ledger entry and AGL reconciliation, loan corrections, ACH deposits, returns and notifications.
  • Assist the office manager with daily activities field audits, findings and finding resolution along with weekly QC meetings when require.
  • Select ADP system and oversee implementation.
  • Complete bi-weekly payroll utilizing ADP payroll software.
  • Record cash disbursements and receivables utilizing QuickBooks.
  • Maintain independently of high volume AP for wholesale jewelry manufacturer.
  • Reconcile and research discrepancies in subsidiary ledgers and make proper adjustments.
  • Collaborate with corporate controller, AR manager and senior accountants in annual audit preparation.

Bookkeeper Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 12% of Bookkeepers are proficient in Payroll Tax Returns, Customer Service, and Reconciliations. They’re also known for soft skills such as Computer skills, Integrity, and Detail oriented.

We break down the percentage of Bookkeepers that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Payroll Tax Returns, 12%

    Posted daily activity, oversaw budgets and reconciled bank accounts Produced monthly financial statements and processed quarterly sales and payroll tax returns

  • Customer Service, 10%

    Recognized for providing excellent customer service while maintaining the confidentiality of assets and security of information.

  • Reconciliations, 10%

    Organized and maintained accounting functions including accounts payable/receivable, bank reconciliations, general ledger accounts, cash deposits, and payroll administration

  • Data Entry, 7%

    Managed company-wide accounting and reporting functions for eleven subsidiaries including typing data entry into computer, assembled updated material.

  • Journal Entries, 5%

    Generated and input adjusting journal entries to provide accurate financial statements.

  • Financial Transactions, 4%

    Key Responsibilities o Financial Transaction Specialist o Cash Register Collections/Safe Deposits o Send/Receive funds through Western Union o Bill Payments

"payroll tax returns," "customer service," and "reconciliations" aren't the only skills we found bookkeepers list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of bookkeeper responsibilities that we found, including:

  • The most important skills for a bookkeeper to have in this position are computer skills. In this excerpt that we gathered from a bookkeeper resume, you'll understand why: "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks need to be comfortable using computer spreadsheets and bookkeeping software." According to resumes we found, computer skills can be used by a bookkeeper in order to "used computer programs microsoft word and excel, as well as atb (accountants trial balance) and tax tools 2006. "
  • Another trait important for fulfilling bookkeeper duties is integrity. According to a bookkeeper resume, "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks have control of an organization’s financial documentation, which they must use properly and keep confidential." Here's an example of how bookkeepers are able to utilize integrity: "investigate and clear old trial balances on the trust account. "
  • Detail oriented is also an important skill for bookkeepers to have. This example of how bookkeepers use this skill comes from a bookkeeper resume, "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks are responsible for producing accurate financial records" Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "print monthly statements, trial balances, check register, detailed general journal, general ledger and payroll reports. "
  • A bookkeeper responsibilities sometimes require "math skills." The responsibilities that rely on this skills are shown by this resume excerpt: "bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks deal with numbers daily and should be comfortable with basic arithmetic." This resume example shows how this skill is used by bookkeepers: "assist in month and year end close procedures and preparation of statistics and various analysis used in financial reports. "
  • See the full list of bookkeeper skills.

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    What Accounting Assistants Do

    An accounting assistant is responsible for supporting the daily operations of the business' accounting department, from reviewing financial transactions to the submission of financial reports. Accounting assistants' duties include performing data entry and clerical tasks, maintaining a safe record of account statements, updating and analyzing transactions, verifying the accuracy of financial records, and managing customers and vendors' inquiries as immediate as possible. An accounting assistant must have a broad knowledge of the accounting principles and processes, as well as excellent communication and time-management skills, especially on meeting strict deadlines and doing complex tasks as needed.

    In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take accounting assistant for example. On average, the accounting assistants annual salary is $768 lower than what bookkeepers make on average every year.

    Even though bookkeepers and accounting assistants have vast differences in their careers, a few of the skills required to do both jobs are similar. For example, both careers require customer service, reconciliations, and data entry in the day-to-day roles.

    As far as similarities go, this is where it ends because a bookkeeper responsibility requires skills such as "payroll tax returns," "journal entries," "credit card accounts," and "quickbooks pro." Whereas a accounting assistant is skilled in "credit card payments," "quickbooks," "account reconciliations," and "tax returns." So if you're looking for what truly separates the two careers, you've found it.

    Accounting assistants really shine in the finance industry with an average salary of $41,823. Whereas bookkeepers tend to make the most money in the manufacturing industry with an average salary of $42,063.

    The education levels that accounting assistants earn is a bit different than that of bookkeepers. In particular, accounting assistants are 1.3% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree than a bookkeeper. Additionally, they're 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of an Account Payables Analyst?

    An accounts payable analyst is primarily responsible for managing and processing invoices and payments, ensuring accuracy and timeliness. They are also responsible for coordinating with various departments to obtain and acquire data and invoices, submitting payments to external vendors and suppliers, identifying errors and inconsistencies, and providing corrective measures. One may also perform clerical tasks such as producing progress reports and presentations, managing schedules, addressing issues and concerns through calls and correspondence, and resolving them promptly and efficiently.

    Now we're going to look at the account payables analyst profession. On average, account payables analysts earn a $14,019 higher salary than bookkeepers a year.

    While the salary may be different for these job positions, there is one similarity and that's a few of the skills needed to perform certain duties. We used info from lots of resumes to find that both bookkeepers and account payables analysts are known to have skills such as "customer service," "reconciliations," and "data entry. "

    While some skills are similar in these professions, other skills aren't so similar. For example, several resumes showed us that bookkeeper responsibilities requires skills like "payroll tax returns," "financial transactions," "bank deposits," and "hr." But an account payables analyst might use skills, such as, "vendor statements," "erp," "strong analytical," and "pivot tables."

    Account payables analysts may earn a higher salary than bookkeepers, but account payables analysts earn the most pay in the energy industry with an average salary of $66,023. On the other side of things, bookkeepers receive higher paychecks in the manufacturing industry where they earn an average of $42,063.

    On the topic of education, account payables analysts earn similar levels of education than bookkeepers. In general, they're 2.9% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    What Technology Do You Think Will Become More Important And Prevalent For Accountants In The Next 3-5 Years?

    Sheri Geddes

    Associate Professor of Accounting, Hope College

    Virtual interviews are nothing new. For years companies have used phone interviews to filter candidate pools. However, as hybrid or Zoom interviews become more common, candidates will need to show the same professional attributes as face-to-face interviews. These professional attributes include joining the meeting on time, dressing appropriately, actively listening, and being polite and understanding, even if there are technical issues during the interview process. Show more

    How an Accounting Technician Compares

    An accounting technician is responsible for evaluating financial information procedures to support accounting and taxation tasks, verifying the accuracy of account statements for the reference of accountants. Accounting technicians manage the payroll processes, generate invoices, perform account reconciliations, analyze account receivables, prepare budget reports, and monitor the company's financial transactions. Accounting technicians should always adhere to taxation legislation, comply with accounting disciplines, and coordinate with the account management for any findings and concerns, requiring them to have excellent communication and analytical skills.

    Let's now take a look at the accounting technician profession. On average, these workers make higher salaries than bookkeepers with a $1,000 difference per year.

    While looking through the resumes of several bookkeepers and accounting technicians we discovered that both professions have similar skills. These similarities include skills such as "customer service," "reconciliations," and "data entry," but they differ when it comes to other required skills.

    There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, a bookkeeper is likely to be skilled in "payroll tax returns," "hr," "credit card accounts," and "sales tax," while a typical accounting technician is skilled in "payroll," "travel vouchers," "financial statements," and "management system."

    Interestingly enough, accounting technicians earn the most pay in the government industry, where they command an average salary of $39,070. As mentioned previously, bookkeepers highest annual salary comes from the manufacturing industry with an average salary of $42,063.

    Accounting technicians are known to earn similar educational levels when compared to bookkeepers. Additionally, they're 1.4% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Junior Accountant

    Junior accountants maintain the financial records of companies through the analysis of their general ledger accounts and balance sheets. The accountant's post journal entries, maintain accounts receivable and payable, and update financial statements. They pay payroll every month, reconcile ledgers, and submit payroll taxes. The skills necessary for this job include analytical skills, problem-solving, information confidentiality, and proficiency in accounting software and technology. They are also expected to be detail-oriented.

    Junior accountants tend to earn a higher pay than bookkeepers by about $10,107 per year.

    According to resumes from both bookkeepers and junior accountants, some of the skills necessary to complete the responsibilities of each role are similar. These skills include "reconciliations," "data entry," and "financial transactions. "

    Each job requires different skills like "payroll tax returns," "customer service," "journal entries," and "credit card accounts," which might show up on a bookkeeper resume. Whereas junior accountant might include skills like "account reconciliations," "quickbooks," "payroll taxes," and "accruals."

    Now, let's take a closer look at the financials in each career. The construction industry tends to pay more for junior accountants with an average of $56,091. While the highest bookkeeper annual salary comes from the manufacturing industry.

    Junior accountants reach similar levels of education when compared to bookkeepers. The difference is that they're 3.7% more likely to earn a Master's Degree more, and 0.0% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    What a Bookkeeper Does FAQs

    How Hard Is It To Become A Bookkeeper?

    It is not hard to become a bookkeeper. The job mainly involves categorizing spending and earnings properly and entering financial information into accounting systems. No formal education is required to be a bookkeeper, and only basic math skills are needed.

    What Is A Bookkeeper Vs. An Accountant?

    A bookkeeper is generally the person who compiles financial records, while the accountant typically interprets this financial information to help with taxes, loan applications, or long-term financial decisions.

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